March 22, 2024


Ep. 406 - Can I See Some ID: An Adults-Only Trans-Pacific Sailing

Hosted by

Brian Sam
Ep. 406 - Can I See Some ID: An Adults-Only Trans-Pacific Sailing
DCL Duo Podcast: A Disney Cruise Line Fan Podcast
Ep. 406 - Can I See Some ID: An Adults-Only Trans-Pacific Sailing

Mar 22 2024 | 01:14:18


Show Notes

Dana joins us this week to share his adults-only Disney Cruise Line Trans-Pacific sailing aboard the Disney Wonder. Was there enough for adults to do onboard to keep Dana and his husband occupied all the way from Honolulu to Sydney? We're chatting activities, excursions, shows, food and so much more from this unique DCL sailing.

If you want to join the DCL Duo Inaugural Podcast Cruise aboard the Disney Magic for her three-night sailing on June 19, 2024 from Ft. Lauderdale to Nassau and Lookout Cay, you can head over our to our booking page at My Path Unwinding Travel to secure your room today!!

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Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Speaker A: And my husband just starts screaming like the highest piss. Snake, snake, snake. And starts running in the opposite direction. And little did I know I was disturbing a snake slumber because they decided to start coming out from under the tree. And I not at all let go of the coconut, ran away from there. And you. [00:00:34] Speaker B: Welcome back, everybody, to this week's episode of the DCL duo podcast, brought to you by my path, unwinding travel. And Sam, your favorite part of the show, maybe your second favorite part of the show. I think your favorite part of the show is rapid fire. Your favorite part of the show, right? [00:00:47] Speaker C: One of my favorite parts of the show. It is review time. I love hearing the accolades from our listeners, our fans. I'll call them my public. My people. [00:01:01] Speaker A: Your public. [00:01:02] Speaker B: It's not even our public. This is the five minutes of stoking Sam's ego. So here we go. This review comes from Tyler Burnett, 28, who writes great show, going on my second Disney cruise in the fall of 2024, and use this podcast to hear experiences from other people. Very helpful and informative. [00:01:18] Speaker A: Keep up the good work. [00:01:20] Speaker B: So there you. [00:01:20] Speaker C: Oh, awesome. Thanks, Tyler. We will keep on keeping on. How about that? [00:01:27] Speaker B: All right. Well, Sam, do you want to take it from there, intro our guest and get the conversation started? [00:01:32] Speaker C: I would love to, because while we like to say we live on the west coast best coast, our guest is. [00:01:39] Speaker A: In don't do. [00:01:47] Speaker B: Folks from New York on, but it is not west coast best coast, Sam. West coast. [00:01:52] Speaker C: Listen, I was born in New York, so I have to give it up for some hometown love for our guest today, Dana, who is coming all the way to us from New York City. Welcome to the show, Dana. [00:02:05] Speaker A: Thanks so much for having me. I'm excited to be here. And while I live here in New York, I am finishing my PhD out of Seattle. I am a bit bicoastal myself, so I'm excited to be here. [00:02:18] Speaker C: Oh, awesome. Well, you'll have to come in and visit us and say hi when you're here. Probably getting your diploma or something. Well, Dana, thank you, Dr. [00:02:28] Speaker B: List in Seattle. That's what we'll call it. [00:02:30] Speaker A: Dr. List in Seattle. [00:02:34] Speaker C: Well, Dana, we're so glad that you reached out to us to join us and talk about your trans Pacific crossing cruise, which was obviously from beautiful Honolulu all the way to Australia to Sydney. But before we dive into talking about that cruise, we need to ask you your cruising background. And I have to say you have one of the most unique and awesome cruising backgrounds, starting with the big red boat. So why don't you tell our listeners what your cruising background is and include the big red boat. [00:03:11] Speaker A: Yeah, well, it starts with the big red boat. So my parents were avid cruisers before they had their family, and the first family cruise that we went on was on the big red boat. And I must have been in, like, third grade at the time, so this is many moons ago. But what was so brilliant about that trip is it was my first introduction to cruising, but it was at the time where they were doing that seven day land and sea adventure. [00:03:36] Speaker C: Oh, yeah. [00:03:37] Speaker A: What was great about being on the big red boat is it's kind of where I discovered my passion for theater. One of the activities that was available was actually beginning to put on a show that was then going to be performed at the end of the cruise on the big red boat. And then what was really exciting is that then that was integrated into the VHS tape that they would end in their advertising. And so my visage, my beautiful performance, may live on in perpetuity if you still have a VCR player somewhere that is showing kind of the greatest hits of the big Red book. So it was a lot of fun, and that was kind of my experience in what was, like the kids club at that time. I did no other activities except prepare for this big performance at the end of the cruise. [00:04:24] Speaker C: Oh, my God. What show did you put on? I have to ask. [00:04:27] Speaker A: It was this amalgamation where I was dancing with, I guess, a stage performer who was dressed like Chiquita banana, and one of the songs was just about how much we love bananas because they don't have any bones in them. And it was like the thing that I hear often with folks when they're like, where did your performance history start? And I usually go into a song and dance about how much I love bananas, because that's the piece that I can remember from that time. It's been a while since I've watched the VHF, but it exists somewhere. So, yeah, that's where my cruise kind of history began. And cruising was really common for us as a family. In terms of DCL, I didn't start sailing DCL until 2012. The first cruise I did was, I think, a seven day out of New York City down to Port Canaveral and castaway. And that was kind of the first adventure. And since then, I've done at least one a year since then. And I've also been on other cruise ships as well. Carnival, Norwegian, MSC, Royal Caribbean. So I've kind of run the gamut in terms of options that exist out there. [00:05:35] Speaker C: That's amazing. Well, and now, as we were talking before the show, you are a drama therapist. So you have merged your passion for theater with helping people. And I love that. I will admit I had not heard of your profession before. I've heard of music therapists and art therapists, but I had not heard of a drama therapist before. But I just love this. That's amazing. So kudos to you for figuring out a way to merge multiple passions into a career. That's pretty amazing. [00:06:07] Speaker B: I think everyone who has drama needs a therapist, Sam. I think that's the most. [00:06:12] Speaker C: Well. [00:06:15] Speaker A: And we are sure when you are ready, but yes, no, perfecture. I'm drama therapist number 531. So that gives you kind of an idea across the country, really across the nation, because it's Canada and Mexico as well, lets you know how small we are as a field, but we are growing for sure. And here in New York, there's, you know, probably half of the drama therapists are here local in New York City. [00:06:41] Speaker C: Yeah. That's amazing. All right, well, we've got to talk about this amazing trans Pacific cruise first. Let's start out with who is in your sailing party and why did you book this particular itinerary? [00:06:56] Speaker A: Sure. So in this sailing party, it was me and my husband, Jared, and we booked this itinerary because it was our ten year wedding anniversary. [00:07:04] Speaker C: Happy anniversary. [00:07:06] Speaker A: Yeah. Thank you. And we were debating whether or not we were going to do a vowel renewal ceremony on castaway or do this trip. And we ultimately went this way because we would rather spend about a month with each other than kind of just a few days with just a few handful of folks on castaway. And we knew that we always wanted to go to Australia and to Hawaii. We had never been to either. And this just felt like a great way to see both of them. And the ports that they're stopping at weren't necessarily places we knew we would fly to. This just felt like the best way to kind of capture a number of those opportunities and just take a break. We had never taken a month off of work before. And the fact that we're at a place in our careers where we could do that and the fact that we're adults, we don't have children, we kind of have that freedom and flexibility to do that. And it was my birthday as well, so there's a lots of things to kind of celebrate on this trip. [00:08:00] Speaker C: That's awesome. Yeah. I mean, that is a lot of time to take off of work. One of the reasons a lot of people asked us, Brian and Sam how come? Are you going on one of these trans Pacific cruises, either from Hawaii to Sydney or back? And we're like, no. [00:08:15] Speaker B: I kept saying yes and Sam kept saying no. That's the real answer to what happens. [00:08:19] Speaker C: Yeah, no, the real answer. Know all of them are in the middle of the school year. Both options, both directions. Eastbound, westbound in the middle of the school year. And so Nathan goes to school and we're not homeschooling type, let's put it that, well, I nearly committed a homicide during COVID when there was some homeschooling that had to be done. And so I'm not going to say who was going to be the victim of that homicide, but, yeah, that was a rough time for us in our family and, yeah, so the idea of pulling him out of school would not really be feasible. And then for both of us, it would have been not impossible, but difficult to take off a month of time for sure. So I think that's amazing that you guys were able to do that. But, yeah, I mean, the cruise is a two week cruise, basically. And then once you're over in Australia, you're not going to just turn around and go home. Right. That doesn't make sense. You've spent all this time to get there. So let's talk about how you got first to Hawaii. Obviously, you're flying from New York, lots of direct flights. But is there a direct flight to. [00:09:31] Speaker A: Yes. Yeah, we did a direct flight, and I wouldn't have it any other way. [00:09:35] Speaker B: It's going to be a long flight, though. That's going to be, what, 10 hours? [00:09:38] Speaker A: I think it was 11 hours at the end of the day. Yeah. But the timing worked out really nicely because we didn't have to get up super early to get to the flight. I think it left at like nine or ten. And then we landed in Hawaii at like three or 04:00 in the afternoon. And so, of course we're tired, but it was nice to have a bit of daylight still in Hawaii. Yeah. And so it was a relatively breezy flight. The flight from Australia was way longer than it was to Hawaii. [00:10:05] Speaker C: Yeah, that makes sense. Well, so where did you stay in? I know the answer to this question, but our listeners don't. So where did you stay in Hawaii and why? [00:10:14] Speaker A: Yeah, so we stayed at Alauni because we figured, well, this is the opportunity to do it. And at first we weren't planning to stay there, but then we got an email, I think, about a month before sailing saying that they were offering a 20% discount for pre cruise days. And so we were just like, we might as well do this because the cost of what we were going to pay for a hotel in Waikiki was starting to be pretty similar in price to Alani. And we figured we're only going about two or three days before. And so it's just a great opportunity to actually experience a resort and not actually do much of the island, but actually allow ourselves to stay more central to Olani. And we know we'll get back to Hawaii. We figured we would get to Hawaii again before we would Australia, so we had less time in Hawaii and more time in Australia. [00:11:04] Speaker C: Yeah, that makes sense. Well, and honestly, yeah, Waikiki is quite expensive, and the beach is not nearly as nice as the beach. I mean, it's very crowded as the beach in Koalina, and it's such a nice little area where Alani is so nice and protected and just relaxing and lovely to be. So I'm glad you got to spend a few days there. Let's talk about how you got to the port, because the port is obviously in know you can rent a car, obviously, from the airport in Honolulu to get to Alani, or you get an Uber, whatnot. What was your transportation plan for getting from Alani back to the port, which is certainly not at the airport, but closer to downtown Honolulu? [00:11:48] Speaker A: Yeah, we did Uber. We looked at what the transfer was going to be with DCL, and it was just, frankly, too much money. I think it was like $150 or $200 and the Uber would just be the two of us and we would know that we're kind of going to go in our own pace as we didn't want to get up first thing in the morning and get to the terminal because we figured that the terminal was not going to be as well laid out as the ones down in Florida. So we did a lazy morning and then allowed ourselves to kind of take our Uber over there at like 10:00, 1030 in the morning, and that worked out perfect. We did read that there's usually a lot of traffic, but we didn't have that experience. And I don't know if it was because of the day of the week that it was or whatnot, but it was a relatively smooth trip to the terminal. [00:12:33] Speaker C: Yeah, I bet it was probably, well, I don't know what day of the week it was, but certainly by 1030, rush hour traffic should be over and you're not hitting afternoon school traffic yet. So that seems just like a good time to go. Whereas if we're taking the DCL transfer. That's earlier. They probably know. Hitting some more traffic. [00:12:54] Speaker A: Yeah, well, and everybody we bumped into seemed like they were at Olani getting ready to go on this cruise. And so we just said to ourselves, I think that might be a little chaotic for us, so we wanted to kind of make our own way. [00:13:09] Speaker C: Yeah, well, that's cool that alani had a discounted price. I hadn't heard that before. I think that's great to know that they offer that, because alani, as you mentioned, is also expensive. I mean, Hawaii is just expensive, let's face. But. So you get to the terminal or the port. What is the process like? Is it significantly different than what we see at Port Canaveral? It's obviously not a regular port for Disney. I mean, it is a regular in the sense that they're normally know a couple times a year, but now it's becoming the transatlantic versus just a vancouver to Hawaii situation. How was the port process? [00:13:50] Speaker A: It was relatively smooth. When we arrived, there was, like, stanchions set up outside with the early port arrival times. I think you had, like, concierge 1130 1145, and they had us kind of funneled into those different stanchions outside the port itself. It just kind of like, appears. It just feels like that you're not pulling in somewhere. It's kind of like in the middle of what looks like a bit of a restaurant kind of shop area, maybe similar to kind of how San Diego is set up. But we were outside waiting. I think the boarding process started a little bit late, actually. I think we were for 1130, and maybe we got in the doors at 1145, so not too bad. And the lines got pretty long. My concern was that it didn't seem like there was much option for accessible seating for folks. So I think for some, it probably was a bit more challenging and folks with their bags. So I think it was like a cobble road that we were all standing on. But then once you got inside, it was pretty smooth. We were laid twice with two different types of lays, which we were kind of excited about because we didn't get that anywhere else. And so you kind of walked onto the ship with a floral lay, and then I can't remember what the other material was, but two different types of lays. [00:15:10] Speaker C: Oh, wow. Was it one of those? [00:15:13] Speaker A: Yeah, exactly. [00:15:15] Speaker C: Yeah. That's what they give at Alani, at the Luau. That's why we know. But, yeah, that's kind of awesome that they gave everyone lays. That's a fun little addition for being in Hawaii. So was the boarding process quick, slow, average? What would you say? [00:15:33] Speaker A: It felt pretty quick. I mean, especially for it being kind of the first time that they're getting folks onto this longer journey. I think we were on the ship by 1230. So in total, we're talking about 45 minutes, somewhere between 30 to 45 minutes, so not too bad. I certainly have had it worse than that. [00:15:51] Speaker C: Yeah. Well, Brian, should we talk about ports first? Should we talk about onboard experiences first? There's just so many unique things to talk about with this kind of a sailing. [00:16:01] Speaker B: Let's talk about the ports. Yeah, I'm trying to remember the ports of call here. One was America Samoa. Right. And then after that, you remember Fiji. Yeah. So what did you think? America Samoa was your first port of call. [00:16:17] Speaker A: Right. [00:16:18] Speaker B: So what did you think about America Samoa? [00:16:20] Speaker A: Loved America Samoa. It just felt like a really wonderful place to be and the community there was really inviting. We had booked an independent excursion for American Samoa. We recognized that the ones that were available through Disney were kind of too short for the amount of time we wanted to spend on the island. They were about half day excursions and we knew we wanted to be out and kind of maximize the time. But American Samoa is one of those places that just feels maybe similar to Hawaii in the sense that it's like you're moving into these mountains that are quite, well, lush because of the rainforest. It feels almost like Jurassic Parky. And it just is really beautiful. And it was one of those things where, when we were greeted, I think some other folks have talked about this. There's just a whole community of folks outside greeting us through song and dance, which has just made it a really magical experience. They were very excited to have us there and obviously they don't have cruise ships every day going into there, but it was really beautiful when you first kind of got in there, and rainy, of course, but that was to be expected given the climate there. Certainly not a place where you're going to go to find really beautiful beaches and laying out by the water, necessarily. When we were talking with folks there, our tour guide was even saying that swimming is not a big activity for folks who live in American Samoa, that it's just not something that they would necessarily, you would see many people doing. [00:17:49] Speaker B: Interesting living on an island and swimming is not a big. That's interesting. That's interesting. [00:17:56] Speaker C: So what sites did your tour take you to? And was it a private tour or a group tour? I know you said you booked it separately. [00:18:04] Speaker A: Yeah. So we did a lot of research leading up to it. And there was this one company out in American Samoa. It was called, like, best of island tours. And we were communicating with them back and forth about what we wanted to do. And the one tour that we wanted to do, they ended up not having anybody else express interest in. So they gave us the opportunity to join on to a private group tour that was happening. We were lucky enough that they had, like, two people that they were waiting to pay for this tour, and they ultimately didn't, so they offered it to us. I'm sorry to those people who maybe didn't get to go on to this tour because we kind of lucked out in it. But it took us. But they did take us to a couple of different places. We went to a variety of lookout points and what they call, like, the mountain of kings, which is like, really going up into the national parks and getting to see kind of these beautiful kind of views of the mountains, the ocean, a beautiful kind of view of the Disney wonder. We did a little bit of hiking where we got to kind of walk through the woods there. And what that kind of led us out to is being right on the coast. And I think why there's less swimming is because it's very rocky on the coast. There's not necessarily as many sandy places. We got to walk out onto these rocks and kind of just get these beautiful views of kind of the scenery there. We also had a lunch at a local restaurant that was really wonderful and then participated in some of their ceremonies, learning how to open a coconut with your bare hands and how they kind of use every aspect of the coconut, including the hawk, to either make bowls or products and kind of not making sure they're using all of their resources. And I would say probably my favorite moment was they have these flower pot rocks, which is like, if you Google American Samoa, they're like the first pictures that come up. And we got to experience that by being on what was maybe like a twelve foot wide, kind of like, beachy area. And we got to kind of have some time in the water there with these beautiful flower rocks that are kind of like, out in the distance. So it was really just a wonderful day getting to visit that national park, which is probably the hardest national park to get to. We can now say that we have been there. And so it was a variety of different options that were available to us on that tour because there was probably about eight or ten of us on that tour, which made it really easy to kind of move to different spaces in a timely fashion, but still have enough time to appreciate what you're looking at, I would highly recommend going, if you can. I know some folks weren't raving about it when they got back on the ship. I think partly because of the weather and partly because a lot of the tours were new that folks were going on, but I would go back for sure. [00:20:55] Speaker C: Yeah. Well, I think if you can do a private or small group tour really any place, I mean, that's much better than these 40 person bus tours, typically, because with the 40 person bus tour, it's so much about wrangling people and it becomes less about actually seeing the sights. And you can usually get to see less things because you're waiting for this person who disappeared to the bathroom. It's just a lot more complex. So I think whenever you can do a small group tour, if that's available and it's economical, that's often a better option. [00:21:35] Speaker A: It was a family owned business, so the folks we're communicating with are husband and wife. And our tour guide was one of their sisters and folks who were local to American Samoa, which is also really exciting to get to hear about the different histories and stories through their own kind of perspective. And our tour guide was wonderful in the sense that whenever somebody asked a question that maybe had a bit of a controversial answer, she would just say, well, let me think about how best to answer that question. And so kind of allowing herself to filter a moment based on the audience she's speaking to, especially know things like religion and how kind of know Catholicism and Christianity has kind of entered into American Samoa and trying to share that story in, I guess, the most politically correct way. [00:22:23] Speaker C: It's a, you know, like many places. Well, including mainland us. Right. It's a colonized place. And so there is that sort of native perspective that is going to be different from the average mainlander, probably. So, yeah, very, very interesting. Well, your second port was that Fiji. [00:22:45] Speaker A: Yeah, Fiji, which also another beautiful island that we kind of went to. And for Fiji we did a DCL excursion. And what kind of prompted that was we were in Fiji on a Sunday, knowing kind of the way in which religion is within Fiji, we anticipated that a lot of things were not going to be open or weren't going to be running. And so we felt booking through Disney was the safest option because they would have already organized all of the activities. And that proved to be true because at the end of our excursion, we stopped in the downtown area and there was one store open, and you could tell it was like the mall that was waiting for the kind of tour bus to come. Yeah, it just looked like Mickey's main sale because it's just everybody from the ship kind of like picking through the things that they maybe want and getting the souvenirs that they're there to have. But, yeah, we booked another full day excursion with Disney. We knew that when we were going on this trip, there were a couple of things we wanted to do. We wanted to swim in waterfalls. We wanted to take a long boat tour, and we wanted to swim with sea turtles at some point. [00:23:49] Speaker C: Oh, amazing. [00:23:51] Speaker A: Yeah, that was kind of like the list, the kind of dreams that we had, especially because we weren't doing sea turtles in Hawaii. And so in Fiji, we got to do the long boat tour and swim in the beautiful, kind of massive waterfall. And so we got on a big bus, like you were just describing, and we drove, I think, for close to about an hour to a local village, where they kind of filed us all on to longboats. And I think we had maybe about five of us on our long boat. So we were really happy about that because it was quite a small experience. And we just started sailing up the river, and we probably were on the longboat for about 30 minutes until we got to where the waterfall was. And it was kind of a quick hike up to the waterfall. And as you're just kind of moving through the space, it's just really majestic and green and just kind of really beautiful, especially as we saw people riding horses in the water and the animals off in the distance and the knowledge that they have about the different kind of flowers and trees that are around out there. Especially a lot of the ones that we were pointing to were not native to Fiji, but had, by various kind of ways of settling in Fiji, have kind of, like, blossomed and taken over some of the canopies there. But the waterfall is really wonderful. And we're the type of people that we want to be the first in the group of 40 to make it to the scene so that we can get those pictures. [00:25:15] Speaker C: You get pictures without it. I mean, having a couple of people in the background of your pictures, one thing, versus having, like, 50 people and 800 children in the. [00:25:28] Speaker A: Exactly. And so we made it up there, got those pictures, and then got to swam in this pool and up to the waterfall as close as I could. I could touch it, but I was not necessarily getting under it because it was quite a powerful waterfall. And then did the same tour back, kind of following the same path back down, although the long boats really like to race each other. And I will say anecdotally, I think we won the many passages through, and a lot of rapids, too, which was something that was really kind of fun to get to go through. I don't know if everybody on our long boat enjoyed it, but we certainly did. Yeah. And then afterwards, they had a kava ceremony in the local village, which was really beautiful. And then they fed us some kind of local cuisine, although you could choose the local cuisine, or they set up what they called their version of subway, which was essentially like making sandwiches for people. And it's always surprising to me, and not surprising how many people line up for what would be the american cuisine. So I guess it's why things like Daisy's delights do so well on the cruise ship this. [00:26:40] Speaker C: We feel the same. We get all frustrated when we go to a resort in Mexico and they've got, like, a hamburger and Mac and cheese station. We're like, where are the tacos? We want tacos or fajitas or something like that. We want to eat more local food. Now, I don't need. If it's super exotic, I might not want it, like brains or something. I might go for subway in that. [00:27:04] Speaker A: I mean, they're spicing it in a way that makes it easier for folks to digest and be with, and we're a bit more adventure. I mean, we live in New York City, so the cuisine in our neighborhood kind of touches all different cultures and communities. But, yeah, they're certainly making it more palatable for the majority of folks who are on the tour. But it was a really beautiful day. A lot of exciting things happened on that day. [00:27:27] Speaker C: Yeah. What was your third stop? Because you only had three ports right before you hit? [00:27:35] Speaker A: Yeah, yeah, exactly. And so the third one was Numia and New Caledonia, so french Polynesia, which was the most. You can tell that folks travel there often. It's well built up. That feels like a city. And what was unique about that port is everybody on the ship had to be bussed out of the port to the town, I guess the center of town. You couldn't walk through that port, so regardless of what you were doing, you were being bussed out of that area. And so in New Caledonia, when we first looked at the excursions that Disney were offering, there was one that was to this lighthouse. But then we learned that because of a hurricane, that island ended up closing. It experienced some significant destruction. And so we had already had kind of backup plans for Numia, and we decided we were going to just get on a water taxi and have them take us to kind of a remote island for us to be able to swim with sea turtles, it's one of those things where on their ad they're like, you have like an 80% chance of seeing sea turtles. And so we're like, okay, I'll take those. I'll take that risk. And so it was a group called Dale Ocean Charters and they kind of took us out on a water taxi. It was probably about a 30 minutes adventure out to what they call Signal island, which is a very remote kind of small island. There's some picnic tables on the island and then like a toilet further in the distance. But for the most part, there's nothing else there. So a lot of local folks were there at the beach with their bottle of wine and kind of, you can tell that they bring on the things that they want to kind of appreciate on that day. And that was a beautiful day. We didn't get into port until about, I think, 1230 or one. And what I will say, just kind of backing up a little bit. The sail into Nomia alone is worth the price of admission. [00:29:25] Speaker C: Oh, wow. [00:29:25] Speaker A: It feels almost like you're going through a like, as you're sailing through this, you're just seeing the islands all around you. And the fact that we were sailing in around the lunch hour was really nice because you're sitting, eating and also having this beautiful scenery. But we made our way to the city center and kind of met up with the water taxi folks. They took us out to Signal island. We brought our own snorkel gear, but they did have gear available for folks. I would say that you don't necessarily need like flippers and things like this for where the way that this island is set up. But literally right in the main beach area, you swim out 12ft and you've got sea turtles. Yeah, I mean, they said 80%, but there was definitely 100% chance that we saw sea turtles on that day. And so getting to kind of, there's probably about four of them in different areas around there, just kind of moving around and the water is not deep. Feels almost like a castaway depth. And it was just really beautiful watching them do what they do every day, just kind of like being turtles and then just getting to swim alongside them. There was then one turtle too, that had what looked like a baby shark connected to it, probably eating off of it. And so really interesting to see that there were stingrays as well. That kind of came up to play for a little bit. We were there for probably about three and a half, 4 hours. So we managed to kind of film a sea turtles and then walk the island perimeter, which was really beautiful. [00:30:54] Speaker C: Oh, my goodness. Were you not terrified of the baby shark? I mean, I would have been. [00:31:00] Speaker A: No, I was more terrified of the snakes. [00:31:03] Speaker C: Oh, no. [00:31:08] Speaker A: Bring on the baby sharks. We were sitting on our blanket, and all of a sudden, just right above our blanket is just like a fright snake. The one that they're like, this one isn't going to mess with you unless you mess with it. And it's very poisonous. And we're like, all right, so we watched it. I've got a video of it. Even though I hate snakes, are, like, not my thing. [00:31:31] Speaker C: Yeah, not my thing either. [00:31:32] Speaker A: No. And so we were walking the island as well, and I wanted to kind of live my best survivor fantasy. And we managed to get to this a bit secluded area. And there were coconuts everywhere that were kind of, like, still in their husk. And I was like, oh, in American Samoa, I just learned how to open a coconut with my bare hands. So I have the coconut and I go over to this tree stump that's got, like, a bit of a point to it, and I'm like, okay, I'm going to get this open. So I start banging the coconut on the tree, and my husband just starts screaming like the highest piss and starts running in the opposite direction. And little did I know I was disturbing a snake's slumber because they decided to start coming out from under the tree. And I not at all of the coconut ran away from there. And we were very hyper aware of the rest of our adventure walking around this island. Because we're also barefoot. Right. Because we're, like, on an island. There's nothing else there. And so, yeah, so we moved a little bit more briskly and more aware of our surroundings after that. But I almost got the coconut. [00:32:44] Speaker B: At least didn't scream. You're murdering a coconut. [00:32:49] Speaker A: Exactly. [00:32:51] Speaker C: Oh, my God. I am a big survivor fan myself. So I would have been trying to do exactly what you're doing, and then I also would have ran screaming from a snake. [00:33:04] Speaker A: When we were on the shift, there was a National Geographic photographer who was talking about all of the wildlife that he has been bit by so much so that, yes, it was wild what. [00:33:18] Speaker C: He was not, but bit by wow. [00:33:21] Speaker A: And bit so many times that he's now immune to certain poisons. Like, something will bite him and he doesn't have the reaction anymore. But he showed a picture and it looked like this snake, and I just didn't want to have to deal with it. While I trust ship's medical, I'm not sure with a snake bite from a local snake is what I would want to be treated for while on the Disney cruise. But it was a beautiful day, and I highly recommend this tour or taking a taxi and doing this tour independently because it was so well worth it. [00:33:57] Speaker C: That sounds amazing. I'm jealous of the turtles. I'm going to say I'm not jealous of the snakes or even the baby shark. [00:34:09] Speaker A: But that finished early enough that when we got back to the city center, we were able to kind of grab a bottle of wine and sit at a local restaurant and just kind of watch the sunset to kind of really optimize the time. And I think that was probably one of the best ways to end your final port on this cruise. So it was overall, a really wonderful day. [00:34:31] Speaker C: Oh, my. Well, you know, there's only three ports, but this is like a two week, you know, how did you fill the rest of your time, Dina? I mean, did you get bored? All that know, just sitting on the, you know, she's not the wish. I'm being sarcastic for those who can't. [00:34:52] Speaker A: So I can't say we got bored. I think we're also folks who kind of just like relaxing. Like, our favorite thing is grabbing a book, a cup of coffee, or a cocktail, and just kind of like reading. And there's so many different things to do. And we fell into a ritual, which I think is maybe common for a lot of folks when you're doing a long kind of cruise. I started every morning in the rainforest room, mostly because it's what I wanted to do. And also I prefer showering in the locker rooms and in the cabins. I'm six foot five, and I was not the body type that the showers were designed for on Disney Cruise line. And so it's nice to have a full size shower, but getting to do something like that every morning to kind of start the day was really just exactly how I'd like to start every day if the world would let me. [00:35:43] Speaker C: Oh, yeah. I think that's a great tip, though, Dana, in general, because we hear from a lot of people who are tall, and the showers are not made for people who are over, I don't know, maybe like even 510 or 511, right? I'm five seven. The showers work just fine for me, but they're not luxurious. And if you go to the spa and you take a shower in one of the spa showers, they are luxurious. And if they will fit you if you happen to be over 6ft tall. So I think that's a great tip in general. Another friend of ours, Jake, always goes, he says every shower he takes on Disney Cruise line is in the spa because he's also over 6ft tall. He's like six four or something like that. And so he has the same problem. The showers are just way too short in the stateroom and they have the nice Elemis products in the showers in the spa. [00:36:38] Speaker A: Yeah, that's really nice. There was one cruise I was on and I ended up knocking the COVID to the fan that's on the top of the shower off. And here I thought we were going to get in trouble for proper deep restriction, but Disney was so apologetic. They sent a bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries because they felt that they made the issue. And here I am knocking it off because I'm just trying to shampoo my hair. [00:37:08] Speaker C: All people problems. Yeah. Well, I think the rainforest sounds like a really nice way to start anyone's day. I'm sure Brian would enjoy starting his day that way. Well, I feel like we've got to talk a little bit about some of the adult only experiences. Now, you and your husband are traveling, obviously without children, as you mentioned, and so you get to really spend time in the rainforest room, the adult only pool, and then of course, the adult only bars and activities that are in those spaces. What were the kinds of activities that you all felt like you were going to more regularly? Are you trivia people? [00:37:52] Speaker A: We are trivia people for sure, but we're selective trivia people. If we've done two trivias already in a day and the third one is a topic we know we're not going to do well on, we typically avoid. But, and I did win trivia once, so I'm excited about. It was, I think it was theme songs, like TV theme songs. I think Jared had gone to bed early and I went to the last trivia of the evening and joined in with some folks that I had just met and kind of won that medal. [00:38:27] Speaker C: Nice. [00:38:28] Speaker A: Felt proud of that because we definitely didn't win any of the other ones. We're like the 18 pointers, right? We're not the 22s because they've also gotten the extra credit one. But there was so much trivia that they ran out of games on this ship. They were using the new system so everything was like through the television, which we have not seen before, instead of like the old PowerPoint versions. But they ended up going through all of the trivia that maybe the last two days they were breaking out the old PowerPoint versions of trivia. [00:39:03] Speaker C: Oh, yeah. [00:39:04] Speaker A: Because they had just done so much. And so trivia definitely was one thing we did, but we also really liked the anyone can cook series, which was kind of John Ashton coming and teaching folks how to cook. That happened just about every day that there was a sea day, and it included kind of a small glass of wine, and then you got to sample whatever he was cooking. The reality of those shows is that they're trying to use a device and plug in to get power. And most of the time it wasn't working. And so it felt like a stand up comedy act in addition to kind of teaching us how to cook different food products. And that was a lot of fun. But they were super busy. People were lining up really early for those. But I'll give a tip that we did not line up early for them. We typically got there ten to 15 minutes before chose the shortest line because they let both lines in at the same time, and it allowed us to kind of get in, get a seat that we needed and just kind of really enjoy those experiences. [00:40:03] Speaker C: Awesome. Now, the food that he was cooking, was it like his own creations, or was it stuff that you would eat on the Disney cruise? [00:40:13] Speaker A: It was his own creations. And so there were his own recipes. You got like a recipe card, and if there was a sauce connected to it, it also taught you how to make the different sauces. So one of them was a beef rangdin, and then another was like a fried fish sandwich with, like, a beautiful dressing on it. So not stuff you would be able to order, but everybody got to sample it. And you could tell that they were working really hard on the kitchen to produce those things as well, but things that were different than what you would find in main dining or even on a Disney menu. And he seems to be somebody who is pretty well known within the food industry. And he was even mentioning that he's been in talks with folks about having his own cooking show and things like that. So it's really nice to get to be a part of that. [00:40:59] Speaker B: You're the guinea pigs for his upcoming food network, too, then. [00:41:01] Speaker A: Yeah, exactly. Or at least the book that's about to come out. [00:41:07] Speaker C: Nice. What about evening activities? Well, you mentioned actually the National Geographic photographer who talked about the different things that he had photographed. So we know there were some specific seminars on board, but did they do all of the sort of standard adult evening activities and how did they fill in the rest of the nights? Because you've got a lot of nights on board. Did they do match your mate more than once, or how do they sort of fill in the adult activities? [00:41:37] Speaker A: Some of the activities got repetitive. I think I only saw match your mate once, but they did something called majority minds a couple of times. And the reality is these activities are 30 minutes, right? So I think they're trying to offer way more of those. But one thing that we appreciated is a lot of the main stage performers. So we had Barry Kialoha, who was from Hawaii and I think had been on the ship from Vancouver down to Hawaii and then was traveling with us. She was one of the first main stage shows that we had. She did her show island girl, but then she also did an adult only performance a few nights later, which I think, sam, you would have loved. It was called bottoms up, and it was a salute to all the altos who have just kind of lived their lives and created these beautiful careers, because she herself is an alto. [00:42:31] Speaker C: You're speaking my love language. [00:42:33] Speaker A: Exactly. [00:42:35] Speaker C: Forever. [00:42:37] Speaker A: So it's just really wonderful to get to see that. So she did a 30 minutes kind of cabaret style show, and they did that with a number of the different acts. And so for her, it was, we got to see her full show and then this kind of half hour show. And then later in the cruise, they had the string sirens, I think is what they were called. And they were a string quartet from Australia, and they did their first show as an adult only kind of half hour production, and then they later and the crews had a full performance. So we really appreciated that, especially if we weren't going to make it to the main stage shows. Sure. And it's also just really nice to kind of just have that additional way of seeing performers and productions that you really like to see. And Barry's show in particular was really just wonderful. It spoke to my heart, and you could tell that she had her own little cult following of people who really were into so really, really exciting to have some of those opportunities available. [00:43:34] Speaker C: Oh, I love. [00:43:39] Speaker B: Dual fans. You know, we get the question all the time. Should I use a travel agent to book my next Disney cruise, or should I just book with Disney directly? And I'm going to tell you, if you have that question in the back of your mind right now, you should stop what you're doing and head over to slash dclduo. The folks over at Mypath Unwinding provide an amazing service. They are so knowledgeable and so friendly. We rely on them ourselves to book our family vacations, and they provide an amazing service. And the best part is you don't pay anything extra for it. Disney, other tour providers and other cruise lines have built the cost of their commission into their pricing. So if you're booking directly, you are just paying that money back to the provider when you could be spending it on the kind of service you would get. From Mypath unwinding travel. You've heard from their agents on our show. They are so knowledgeable, so giving of their time. They know so much about Disney Cruise line, sailing, concierge, other cruise lines, other all inclusive vacations and adventures by Disney that if you have a vacation in mind, they are the ones to book it for you. So again, head over to slash dclduo so they know we sent you their way. Thanks mypath unwinding for sponsoring the show and with that, back to our episode. [00:44:47] Speaker C: I love when they bring specialty artists onto the ship especially. Obviously they tend to have a Broadway visiting artist on board, but I love when they bring in that extra one who's sort of a current Broadway performer or just high level theater performer. And they do those cabaretes. Such an amazing, such an amazing experience. Now, I imagine they had the standard frozen dreams, golden Mickey's as. [00:45:18] Speaker A: Yeah, yeah, we saw them. Know, not for the first time. Golden Mickey's is one of Jared's favorite shows. I can't say this is my favorite production of the Golden Mickey's. [00:45:31] Speaker C: Sure. [00:45:31] Speaker A: I think some of the pieces are getting a bit tired. For me, Toy Story in particular felt a bit messy, and it's just less enjoyable to watch all masked characters on a large stage like that when you know that they've done Toy Story well before without masks. [00:45:49] Speaker C: And you know that they're not singing, they've got a track. Right? So I always get disappointed when I'm seeing live theater that's done with a track instead of live theater done with actual people singing. And in that show in particular, it's a mixture, right? Some of the songs are done with a track and some lip syncing or some head characters, and some of them are done live. And there's nothing better than live theater. Even if somebody's pitchy in a moment, I'd rather still see it live. [00:46:21] Speaker A: Yeah, I'm right there with you. And we did see frozen. That's always a wonderful production. And what was nice about this sailing, right? Because it was long enough to have kind of the castaway meet up for platinum and above. And during that, they were kind of like pumping us full of prosecco while showing us a piece of frozen. And what was really cool is that they showed the scene, and then they deconstructed the scene. So they slowed it down, and we got to hear all the cues and how they assembled the sled. And that was really just a magical moment to get to see kind of peeling behind the curtain and getting to see how they're really running the show there, because I think it's magical. We know that. And getting to see how the magic is made, especially somebody who is a theater artist myself, it's just like, it gives more value to what you see these folks doing on a huge moving ship in the middle of the Pacific. So really exciting stuff. [00:47:18] Speaker C: And you get to know the backstage folks, right? Like, you get to see all of that crew and how they're making the magic happen in addition to the on stage performers. And so I love that it gets a chance to recognize those people, because without them, all of these magical things that happen on stage, like the sled coming together and then the sled falling apart, it can't possibly happen. We had the opportunity to see one of those done for Aladdin years ago on the fantasy. We have not seen a behind the scenes look at frozen. I've heard others who've had the behind the scenes look at beauty and the beast on the mean. I would love to see all of them because I've seen all three of those shows. But getting to see that backstage look and how they actually produce the show is, I think, a really special opportunity. [00:48:12] Speaker A: And I love that mention of getting to allow the folks behind scenes to be front and center, even though they may not want to be based on how they're all kind of speaking and being like, yeah, we'd rather stay behind. [00:48:25] Speaker C: You never take above the bow at the end of the show. They don't ever get the bow at the end of the show. Elsa and Anna take their bow. Well, one thing, though, I think, is unique on Disney, and I don't know how you feel about this, but the characters, they don't ever get to tell you later, like, when you see them in their normal clothes or in their normal uniform, when they're character handlers, they won't tell you who they play. So it's only if you recognize them and say, oh, I loved you as Anna or I loved you as Elsa. Right. [00:48:57] Speaker B: Can't you ask them? Aren't you friends with so and so? [00:49:00] Speaker C: No. They won't respond about no if they're not on duty. If you see them in their hometown, they would say that, but not when they're on the ship. When they're on the ship, they won't say who they're friends with, even, which I get because they're trying to not spoil the magic. But I also want to be able to recognize them and thank them because I don't know, like in normal theater, you can wait in New York in particular, you can wait at the backstage door to thank them after if you want. Yeah. [00:49:33] Speaker A: Or when tangled first premiered, they gave out play bills. [00:49:36] Speaker C: Yeah. [00:49:37] Speaker A: And it's something that I've not seen since then and I get why. Right. Especially if the cast is turning over often. But I hear you there. Right. Of being able to kind of lift up and celebrate kind of the performances that are. Yeah. [00:49:51] Speaker C: Such talented people on board all of the ships. I'm always amazed. Well, let's talk a little bit, Dana, about some of the, there were some special things that happened on board. I think you had a little celebration for crossing the equator and you might have had even another deck party. Tell us. I know we've talked to a couple of other folks who were on your sailings, but I'd love to hear from your perspective what was special about this cruise and what you thought about those special events. [00:50:20] Speaker A: It's over the equator crossing. I would say that there were two events that happened. There was an event during the day which was like preparing us to be crossing the equator, to move from polywogs to some other category. As I share this, you can hear how much I enjoyed it, probably, which was not so much. And partly I think it's because being somebody who is a performer has some experience within theater. You can tell it was a bit of a last minute put together, cobbled together. Yeah. And it's like, let's take what is like an event we usually do with relay races and now just add these characters to kind of make it about crossing the equator. So we didn't stay as long for that. But what we did get to see is the folks who were enjoying themselves seemed to be having a really good time. But we watched from above during the day and then the evening, as some folks have shared already, they kind of fed up the boat so that we could cross the equator at a time that was a little bit more reasonable to have a deck party sometime between 1030 and eleven. They had a deck party for the moment when we crossed the equator, and that felt almost like New Year's Eve. Right. They had a countdown clock and then kind of like celebrated when we hit the equator. And then at that point, I was like, okay, we did it, and now we can continue about our evening. But they did have a commemorative pin that I bought that is like a Disney cruise line crossing the equator pin, which I was really excited to kind of have because it is a big moment. It was my first time crossing the equator, and I appreciate that they celebrated it twice in that, you know, I imagine the folks who are coming back from Australia will have a higher caliber experience of those activities than kind of the first foray out. [00:52:13] Speaker C: Yeah, that makes sense. That makes sense. Did they do any other deck parties on board or fireworks on board? I mean, I can't remember. Do you have a standard pirate night or. [00:52:25] Speaker A: No, they did pirate night. We did not go and appreciate pirate night. [00:52:34] Speaker C: Too many pirate nights previously. [00:52:37] Speaker A: Yeah, well, and also, it's just like, I don't know which one I'm going to get because now all the ships have a different version of them, and they didn't have the pirate night menu in the dining room, so it also didn't feel like they were giving as much fanfare towards it. It was when we were in American Samoa, there were fireworks, of course. They also did heroes unite. We got to see kind of a sneak peek of that and got to watch folks kind of rehearse that show over the course of the weeks leading up to it. I would say that that has the potential to be a really wonderful show. You could tell that it was their first kind of like, try out. And I'm a little bit more forgiving than my husband, Jared, when it comes to these things where I can be like, I appreciate all of the work these people are putting in. [00:53:24] Speaker C: Right. That goes into it. [00:53:25] Speaker A: And he's like, well, it should be ready. And I was like, okay, sure. But the amount of folks that they have contributing to that performance, and I don't know if you all have seen it, but they're doing really wonderful work. It is all to attract. So it is a lot of lip syncing, which kind of throws me off sometimes, but I really appreciated what they're trying to do with it. [00:53:49] Speaker B: Well, we've been talking for almost an hour now about this cruise, and we haven't even talked about food yet. [00:53:54] Speaker C: I feel like, oh, my goodness. [00:53:56] Speaker B: So we got to spend some time talking about food. And then I have a couple of questions kind of to wrap things up before we head into the dreaded rapid fire round. [00:54:04] Speaker C: Dreaded rapid fire. [00:54:06] Speaker B: Yeah. But, Dana, talk to us about the food on board. First, let me ask, did you do any of the 14 nights, did you do some specialty dining in palo or did you just stick with main dining? [00:54:15] Speaker A: Yeah, we definitely did Palo. We did palo brunch for my birthday. So the first sea day we did palo brunch, which was really wonderful. It was our first time back to Palo brunch since the pandemic, so getting used to not having the buffet set up instead. Our table was where the buffet used to be, sitting in the buffet, really, but really beautiful meal. We appreciated that. And then we did Apollo dinner a few nights later. We kind of did our specialty dining in the first week of the sailing because we figured the second week is where we have most of the ports and it was going to be busier and we were going to probably be a bit more tired. But the meal is always wonderful in Palo and we really enjoy doing that, especially getting recommendations for wine and things like that from the sommelier was really kind of excellent. [00:55:05] Speaker B: All right, so I always like to ask when people do palo, so what'd you get for your brunch? You know, Sam and I have our favorites, but what's on tap for you for your brunch? Entree? [00:55:15] Speaker A: Yeah. So the chicken parm is always a staple on our table. We typically get a pizza to share. So that gray pizza with the gorgonzola cheese, I think is what it is. I think we went a little bit adventurous and we got the salt and Boca as well to kind of give that a thin. We're an eating family, so having a bunch of different things to try is really kind of the direction we go. We did not get anything sweet in our brunch. Well, I did get the sticky bun, which don't even get me started. I missed the old sticky buns that I could serve myself. Took a bite and I said thank you. [00:55:57] Speaker C: Thank you. No, thank you. Know, Brian will still eat the new one. I will not eat the new one. I'm not a huge dessert person, as many people have heard me talk about on the show, but the old sticky buns were a favorite and I would always have one. But, yeah, I've tried the new one and I don't like the new one. It's completely different. It's still a sticky bun. It's just a completely different sticky bun. [00:56:24] Speaker B: I've got to ask, since the only New Yorker review I've had of the chicken parm is from Sam, does it truly live up to New York style chicken parm or. Yeah. [00:56:33] Speaker A: What do you think? I think it lives up to a style of a New York chicken. [00:56:37] Speaker C: Yes. [00:56:39] Speaker A: I think there's so many different ways that chicken parm is created and served. I had, like, a stuffed chicken parm the other day at an italian restaurant here in New York, and it was cheese inside the chicken, and just, like, beautiful. But what I like about it is it's served over the risotto, right? Yes. [00:56:59] Speaker C: Which is not traditional in New York. You always have it with. [00:57:03] Speaker A: Yeah, yeah. And probably would cause a lot of ugly faces by some of the folks here to see it served on the risotto. But I think it makes it a bit lighter for me, and centers the chicken parm, which I think makes all the difference, but I enjoy it. I mean, I get it every time that we go, and I don't know if it's just because it's what we got the first time we went, so we have to get it every time that we go, or if I'm fully enjoying it, I'll be more aware of it next time, Brian. So I can give you my full palate review. [00:57:33] Speaker B: There you go. [00:57:34] Speaker C: He wants you to try the lasagna now, too, actually. [00:57:38] Speaker A: Happy to. [00:57:38] Speaker B: So what's your dinner entree, then? [00:57:41] Speaker A: So, dinner. When we went to dinner, what did we end up getting? I think we did the prefix option that they have, and I'm pretty sure I went with a steak, but for some reason, it's escaping me. [00:57:56] Speaker C: Yeah, that's what I get the beef tenderloin from. The price fix menu is very good. [00:58:01] Speaker A: I thought I made a note of this, but I did not. Yeah, but I know that we stuck with the prefix for that and got different things. [00:58:09] Speaker B: Awesome. All right, well, main dining, I mean, they got to pull out all the stops for this length of cruise in terms of menu options here because they don't like to repeat. So we know the standard stock and trade sort of menus on board the wonder. But what were some of the. Any standout special menus or items for you on the sailing? [00:58:28] Speaker A: Yeah, what was great is that they didn't repeat any of the menus, and so it was a different menu every night. And I would say that some of the ones that stood out was the aloha hawaii menu, which was one of the first menus we had. And it just had really delicious flavors from Hawaii, like a lemon peppered, kind of like panko breaded shrimp ahi tuna bowl. So some of the things that you would typically get in Hawaii that were kind of then brought onto the ship, and that was a really great menu. There's a delicious beef tenderloin as well that was served on that evening. And then they did a Pacific menu later in the cruise, too, which then pulled together some of the different flavors that you may find in the South Pacific. And one of the dishes that we had was, they called it, like, Alaska Malaysian curry that had chicken, prawns, tofu, and noodles kind of, like, all mixed together. And it actually had a really delicious spice to it, which is not usually our experience of main dining food. Usually it's a bit bice liked. Diet spice is what I like to call it. And this actually had a really good flavor to it. But those two menus in particular really stood out to us as being different and new to us. We had a crossing menu as well, which maybe other folks have experienced, too. And it was nice to just have different flavors across the different evenings. And our dining team didn't steer us wrong ever with their recommendations. And so it was really beautiful meals that we had each night in main dining. [00:59:57] Speaker B: What do they do about shows in main dining? Because you only get two Tiana shows. Do they do any special extra shows in main dining? Or is it just you get the two shows and that's it? [01:00:09] Speaker A: We missed Tiana one night, so I might not be the best one to share about that because we did get the two big shows, so we missed the night. That would have been that in between. But it does seem like they had the crawdad folk every night. So they were also the band that was playing often in the atrium, too, during the cruise. And so I think they were in Tiana's every night as nice. [01:00:34] Speaker B: Nice. [01:00:35] Speaker A: So, no, no. Tiana, I don't think that evening she only showed up for work on the two. Gotcha. [01:00:40] Speaker B: Gotcha. Well, Dana, I'm also curious now, having been on this length of cruise, this trans Pacific crossing, so many sea days, lots of time on board, is it something that you would do again, or was it too much time on a cruise ship? [01:00:54] Speaker A: I would definitely do it again. I've actually been on a longer cruise than this, not with DCL, and actually did it by myself. It was like a 14 night european adventure. And so I would do it again because I didn't get bored. I had plenty of things to do. I read three books, which is what I wanted to do. Being somebody who's, like, in my dissertation phase of my PhD, getting to read things that aren't related to the topic I'm writing about is really wonderful. [01:01:21] Speaker C: Wow. [01:01:23] Speaker A: Sign me up for that. And I would do the same exact trip again, probably going the same direction as well. Of course, I wouldn't say no to going the other way. We joked about going back the other way. This coming February, I think is when it's actually coming back. Yeah, I would do it again. It was just so well worth it. And getting to have that time together was really great. And we had done a longer, our first wish. Sailing ended up being a longer cruise than we anticipated because it was during the hurricane. That was the four day that ended up being a seven day. Well, for us, it turned into a two and a half week experience because we were on a different cruise ship for over a week right before we got onto that one. [01:02:06] Speaker C: Oh, wow. [01:02:07] Speaker A: And that felt like a lot. But in terms of staying on one ship for a duration, you get to know folks in a really great way. And not just the other guests that are on board, but the staff as well, the folks in the bars in particular. And french quarter really became a place that we found ourselves connecting with folks. And I would go back just to see those folks again, for sure. [01:02:31] Speaker C: I love that. [01:02:32] Speaker B: Nice. [01:02:32] Speaker C: Now, you did spend some time in Australia after. We're not going to obviously talk about your whole itinerary there, but give folks an idea of what cities you went to and how many days. And did you think it was enough time? Because obviously the wonder is going to be going over there a few times or once a year now, at least for the next couple of years. [01:02:55] Speaker A: Yeah, we stayed in Sydney. We were there for about five days total. And that felt like a really great amount of time to get to learn a new city, especially being folks from a city. Maybe for OthER folkS, they may need a bit more time. And while we were there, one of the first things we did is we saw BeaUty and the BeasT because TherE was a production of BeaUtY and the beast happening there. And so that was really exciting to get to see that. There's lots of different things to do in Sydney. And they have this one company called Iron Free walking tours, which are free walking tours that you can sign up for and they'll take you around for 3 hours and show you the different sites of Sydney. And so I highly recommend that because you essentially tip based on your experience at the end of that tour. And the tour guides are really knowledgeable and getting to kind of hear their perspective of Australia was just kind of the way that I would want to learn about the history and the culture that kind of lives there. And there's just so many different things you can do. The zoo is AlSo really wonderful there, the Tarongo Zoo. And we did like a twelve hour excursion outside of the city. It's called wildlife, waterfalls and wine, which essentially took us out into the mountains for the day. And we got to spend some intimate time with a koala. We fed kangaroos and wallabies, the things that you want to do when you go to a place like Australia and then went to kind of a winery and got to do some hiking to see some other waterfalls. And I would recommend all of those activities. We do think that if we go back, we would want to venture out to another city just because places like Melbourne are just so accessible once you're there. And everybody we met from Australia on the ship was saying that Melbourne is the place to go for art and culture. And so I'd love to get to experience that at some point, but it was definitely worth spending a few days there. And we were excited to get to do that. [01:04:43] Speaker C: Awesome. [01:04:43] Speaker B: Nice. Well, Dana, we could talk about this cruise probably all afternoon, but we have to wind things down here. But before we do, I need to hand you back over to Sam for some arbitrary questions, some arbitrary rules, and a dash of judgment of the round we know as rapid fire. So, Sam, you want to take it away? [01:05:01] Speaker C: Awesome. I am so excited, Dana, to talk to you and do rapid fire because I'm not going to start with your favorite show. I'm going to save that for towards the end, but I really want to know which one is your favorite. So we're going to start with your couple of Disney favorites. So who is your favorite Disney character? And by Disney, I mean everything and anything Disney owns. [01:05:23] Speaker A: Yeah, for me it would be stitch. For some reason. I've just always felt connected to stitch. [01:05:28] Speaker C: Love it. Favorite Disney movie? [01:05:31] Speaker A: Probably beauty and the Beast. I think just classically it has lived on and it's one of those that I could put on and watch over and over again. [01:05:40] Speaker C: Yeah. Favorite Disney song? [01:05:42] Speaker A: I think it's probably two you'll be in my heart from Tarzan. I think in any version is a great one. And then what dreams are made of from the Lizzie McGuire movie is just like one of those songs that get stuck as an earworm in your head and you just are singing it over and over again. So those two probably. [01:06:03] Speaker C: I love that. That's a great pick. All right, now we're going to move on to Disney Cruise line and I'm going to ask you, what is your favorite onboard activity? [01:06:12] Speaker A: Sitting by the pool and reading. Yeah, it's probably my favorite thing to do. [01:06:16] Speaker B: Yeah. [01:06:16] Speaker C: Awesome. What's your favorite adult bar space? [01:06:20] Speaker A: The piano bars. So keys or Cadillac on the classic ships are probably where you'll find me most evenings. [01:06:26] Speaker C: Awesome. What's another favorite space on the ship? [01:06:30] Speaker A: The COVID cafe. [01:06:31] Speaker C: Oh, yes. [01:06:32] Speaker A: Always getting to sit up there, especially when it's the first. The early seating has started for dinner and there's, like, nobody else around. Is really nice to just kind of hang up there. [01:06:43] Speaker C: Love that. Favorite rotational dining restaurant on any of the ships. [01:06:48] Speaker A: Yeah, it's going to be animators palate on the classic ships because I think it's nostalgia. The first time I saw the show in there in 2012, I think it just has hooked me to that being my favorite. [01:07:00] Speaker C: Love it. All right, favorite savory and favorite sweet food item on board a Disney cruise. We're going to start with the sweets because as everyone knows, I love the savories, so save the best for last. What's a favorite sweet item? [01:07:15] Speaker A: There was this banana cream pie that I had on this cruise. I don't think it's called banana cream pie. It has a B, though, maybe. [01:07:23] Speaker C: Is it the banafi pie? Banafi pie in Tiana's. [01:07:27] Speaker A: Yeah. [01:07:27] Speaker C: So good. [01:07:28] Speaker A: That one did that for me, for sure. [01:07:30] Speaker C: Yeah, I'm with you. I think we must eat all the same foods. What is a favorite savory item on board? [01:07:39] Speaker A: Yeah, I'll stick with this cruise in particular, but there was a lemon peppered panko shrimp on the hawaiian menu that was just, like, perfect. And they were like, jumbo shrimp in a way that you had to cut them up and eat them, and it was really exactly what I wanted from it. [01:07:54] Speaker C: Yum. All right, you've been on all of the Disney ships at this point, right? Okay, so aqua dunk, aqua duck. Aquamouse. Which one? [01:08:03] Speaker A: Probably the aqua duck, I think is probably the way to go. It's an enjoyable. [01:08:10] Speaker C: Yeah. Yeah. All right, favorite Disney stage show. So we're talking Walt Disney theater, not adult stage show. [01:08:18] Speaker A: Yeah. So I am a sucker for villains tonight from just because disney villains were my. It's my go to for sure. Like, our kitchen is Disney villain themed, but if I go now, currently in production, beauty and the Beast probably holds it in terms of just the majesty of that show and what they're able to do on stage. And the marriage between kind of the classic cartoon, the Broadway show, and the live action just kind of comes together really nicely in that production. [01:08:50] Speaker C: Well, you've just won every rapid fire that has ever happened with that answer alone, especially your explanation for why Beauty and the beast. I have never been able to give a great explanation for why I love Beauty and the Beast just so much, and you just gave it. It's the marrying of these three different styles of the show, and it never crystallized in words for me until this moment. I just want to put that out there. [01:09:17] Speaker A: It takes the best from each of them. [01:09:19] Speaker C: Yeah. All right, now, the most controversial question of all. Which is which one is your favorite ship out of all five? [01:09:26] Speaker A: Yeah. It's going to be the magic. [01:09:29] Speaker C: Wow. [01:09:29] Speaker A: Yeah. And it's magic and wonder. The top two. I'm a classic ship person, and it could be the nostalgia again. Right. Magic was the first ship I went on. It's the ship I've been on the most, so definitely magic. Although wonder being on it for 13 days is really magical. But, yeah, the magic, for sure. [01:09:47] Speaker C: Awesome. Okay, now, the last question of rapid fire is also a very important one. If you could go anywhere in the world on Disney cruise line, line ship. Where are you going? What is your bucket list cruise? Dana, you just checked off one off the bucket list. But what is the next bucket list cruise? [01:10:05] Speaker A: So stay with me with this idea. Right, but they joked about a world cruise while we were on this sailing. Right. The captain said we'd love to do a world cruise, so I would love that. But I would love for it to be a world cruise that is connected in a way that you go on all five ships on a different itinerary that kind of takes you around the world. And if it could stop at each of the parks as well, that would be the dream. So my cruise would be all five ships around the world. [01:10:33] Speaker C: I love that. All right, well, I'm on that. I'll be there with you. We'll go on all the rides at all the parks, too. Yeah, I'm there. Yeah. I'll leave Brian and Nathan at home. It'll just be you and me, Dana, and we'll go see all the shows on board all of the ships as well. Truffle prosecco every night, Truffle brissettes every night. Eat your heart out, people. All the chicken parms we can eat and all the banafi pie we can have as well. I love it, Dina. Well, thank you for playing. As I said, you've just won every rapid fire that ever was. Congratulations. [01:11:09] Speaker B: Well, Dana, I always like to ask what's next? What have you got booked out there? [01:11:14] Speaker A: So we've got a cruise on the magic in October, which is one of those sailings that's doing both castaway and lighthouse. Oh, nice. I think it's a five day. We technically have two booked, but I have to cancel one of them, but the magic one is one we're looking forward to most. October is like a really common time for us to travel since it is our anniversary and so we're booked on the magic then. [01:11:36] Speaker C: Awesome. Fantastic. You'll have to come back and tell us about this 11th anniversary cruise. [01:11:45] Speaker B: Well, Dana, it's been fabulous talking to you and hearing all about your trans pacific sailing and for now would love to have you back in the future when you sail next. And for now, I just want to say thank you for coming on and sharing your fabulous experience with all of our listeners out there. We really, really appreciate it. [01:12:00] Speaker A: Thank you. Thanks for having me. [01:12:05] Speaker B: Well, a big thank you to all of you out there for listening this week. We really, really appreciate it. Please be sure to subscribe to the podcast so you can keep getting great content from the DCL duo each week. We'd also love it if you'd head over to Apple podcasts and leave us a five star review. If you hit those five stars, that's great. If you leave us a written review along with a five star review, we will be sure to read it on the air at the end of one of our main episodes. If you're hovering over anything less than five stars, we really want you to reach out to us so we can take your feedback. Best way to do that? Head to to find all the ways to connect with us. It links to our podcast, our vlog. Our blog has all the ways you can connect with us on social media, has our Etsy store where you can find our fun beach bags and magnets that we designed as enthusiasts of each of the Disney cruise line ships. 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The views expressed on the show are solely those of the individuals on the podcast and in no way reflective views of the Disney Company or Disney Cruise line. If you have questions about a Disney Cruise or a Disney vacation, please contact Disney directly or your own travel agent or the great folks over at my path unwinding travel. Thanks again for listening and we'll see you next time for another fabulous Disney adventure with the DCL duo. Good night.

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